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to make whole the victims of hurricane sandy. each of these initiatives passed the senate on a bipartisan basis but was left to languish by the house. the senate will continue to help our fellow americans to help with hurricane sandy before another similar disaster strikes. hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses were destroyed in new york, new jersey and new england and tens of thousands of americans were left homeless by this destructive storm. we have a responsibility to aid our country men as they rebuild their lives and communities as we have after terrible floods, fires and storms in other parts of our nation. once we complete that vital legislation, the senate will take action to make this institution that we all love -- the united states senate -- work more effectively. we'll consider changes in the senate rules. because of this -- because this matter warrants additional debate, we will follow the precedent set in 2005 and again in 2011 to reserve the right of all senators to propose changes in the senate rules and we will explicitly not act in acquiescing in carrying out al
the victims of hurricane sandy. these were debated in the senate. we have to take prevent costumes and preventions before another hurricane sandy. thousands of homes and businesses were destroyed in new york, new jersey, and new england, and 10,000 americans were left homeless. we have a responsibility to rebuild their lives and their communities. as we have done with those who are victims of fire and other natural disasters and other parts of the nation. we will consider changes to the senate rules. because this is a matter of additional debate, we reserve the right of all senators to oppose changes to the senate rules. it is my intention that the senate rules are continued and allow these important rules discussion to continue. i'm hopeful am cautiously optimistic that the republicans and democrats can reach an agreement to manage the senate more effectively in coming months. >> republican leader? >> mr. president, i want to start by co want to start by congratulating president obama on his inauguration. presidential inauguration to always time for the country to come together. w
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